Posts in the series:
- Iran: Tehran Experience
- Cuba: Yank Tanks
- Iran: Esfahan and Yazd
- Myanmar: Mandalay and Shan Minority Region
- Cuba: Reflections
- Myanmar: Orwells Burmese Days
- Iran: Bazaar of Tabriz
- Iran: Bazaars and Caravanserais
- South-East Myanmar: Moulmein and Hpa-An
- Iran: Persepolis and Shiraz in South Iran
- North Myanmar: Kachin State and Myitkyina
- North Iran: Alborz Mountains and Caspian Coast
Back in late 1980’s when I was a teenager, Berlin Wall, East European Communist satellites, and finally Soviet Union itself collapsed within time of only few years. Media, adults, everyone, were commenting and speculating what comes next. Scorpions recorded their famous song Wind Of Change, to portray the epic changes that profoundly changed lives of millions of Europeans. Me included, although completely clueless about it, but I liked the song.
In this decade we’ve seen the news, ministers, presidents, envoys shuffling back and forth to three countries: Republic of the Union of Myanmar, Islamic Republic of Iran and lately Barak Obama was first American president in 90 years to travel Havana, capital of Republic of Cuba. All the high level work has been about ending economic blockades, sanctions and trade embargoes. These countries are far apart with different histories. Issues in negotiations have local nuances, and remains to be seen wether actual changes continue like the wind of change, or stale air of empty words. These events nevertheless represent similar dawn-of-new-era moment for the people of these countries, similar of what was happening in Europe earlier. To people who have been waiting for a long time, in many cases their entire lives. People who want more open, prosperous and predictable future.
Spring 2015 I was finishing my assignment in north Thailand. While land border to Myanmar was always close by, crossing was limited to air travel mainly. So after my work was finished, flight to Yangon was awaiting and journey started from there. Friends also recommended two other countries, and the plan expanded from there.
Here’s the journey so far: